News Story

How the #LightTheWorld Initiative is Inspiring Greater Faith and Gratitude in French Polynesia  

#LightTheWorld offers the opportunity to center Christmas on Christ, encourages participants to serve those around them through acts of kindness and provides a platform for expressing and sharing faith, gratitude and love for God and our neighbors.

The Latter-day Saints of French Polynesia have been sharing their feelings on social media to light up the world. They have singled-out one of their heroes who embodies Christ-like love, shared a photo or a video that inspires peace in them or explained which scene from the film The Christ Child inspires hope for them. 


Hero Highlight—Who represents Christ-like love to you?

Rava Maraetefau shed light on her superhero: “There are superheroes who don't wear masks we call them DAD. My daddy is Weird as Hulk, Strong as Thor, Fast as Flash, Brave as Superman, Smart as Iron-man, Funny as Ant-man, and Handsome as Captain America. I love my dad."

Rose Tapea: “Someone dear to my life has shown me what charity means. He has never expected anything in return. He never counted his time, he always found a way for me to be at peace and smile again and has shown me the qualities and virtues that a leader must possess in order to feel the charity and pure love of Christ. That person is my Bishop, Teahua Moerai.” 

Yasmina Tarati: We grew up together. I first got to know him when he was 12 on a basketball court and we beat him at every game. Then when he learnt how to play, he beat us. He was our little bodyguard. (He was not tall.) As we grew up, we lost contact. He got into Tahitian dance, traveled and enjoyed the world until he became a father to a baby girl. Then everything changed. He got serious, came back to church and took his place as the Patriarch of his home. To this day he is still there by our side. David Gracia is a survivor of the world, a hero, and my dear brother." 

Peace on Earth—Help others feel peace as Jesus did  

Hiti Ellis finds peace at the temple. “I like to look at the beauty of our temples as they bring me a lot of peace in this period of turmoil. I am grateful that I can go there to perform ordinances and renew my everlasting covenants. "  

Varney Temarama says: “I have two photos that give me a feeling of peace and calm. The first is of my wife, Paola and the second is of the family we have built together. They are not perfect but I would be nothing without them. They embody peace and calm for me.”

Noëlline Parker shared, “The video of President Nelson's worldwide prayer of gratitude for the earth and its people in his message of hope and healing, embodies peace to me. He did not simply invite us to unite in a prayer of gratitude but he prayed live in an unprecedented, unique, overwhelming way. Light invaded my mind, gratitude filled my heart and peace flooded my soul so much that I was shaking with gratitude throughout his prayer. A divine moment of peace with God.” 


Watch The Christ Child video—Jesus’s birth brought hope 

Iniki Manea, found in Joseph the epitome of hope, “While watching The Christ Child video, I was touched by the love Joseph had for both Mary and Jesus. With all the challenges he had to face he did not forsake them. I believe that Heavenly Father prepared them for this great mission of being the earthly parents of His beloved Son.“ 

Jenny Lilloux was touched by the scene where the visitors bowed down to the Christ Child. “The scene represents for me respect, humility, and recognition. The ministry of Christ on earth has brought hope to many. He is the example to follow. Christ is the Hope and the Light of the world. Humanity can live in joy, peace and love by having faith in Him and living his gospel.” 

Tevahine Mariteragi from Makemo shares her gratitude for Mary: “I watched the film and tears flowed. I chose to focus on Mary, the mother of Jesus. I feel like I should bow respectfully to such an example of humility, silent suffering and unconditional love for her baby boy. And above all, knowing that she bore the Son of God, she fulfilled her calling with great dignity and gentleness. This carries great seeds of hope for me." 


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